News from: Valley Sanitary District
Building upon participation in voluntary study efforts to help identify and control outbreaks of the COVID-19 virus, Valley Sanitary District has been selected to participate in a new six-month program coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
The HHS’s National Wastewater Surveillance System (NWSS) public health program, which began in 2020, monitors for the presence of COVID-19, its variants, and influenza in wastewater on a national scale. Participating wastewater treatment plants, such as Valley Sanitary, are selected and admitted on a rolling basis, with the wide-ranging public health data shared with the public at the county level.
Valley Sanitary was recently part of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the State Water Resources Control Board’s (SWRCB) collaborative program to further develop the wastewaterbased epidemiology (WBE) approach; the agency operations staff collected samples three times a week, analyzed them and submitted the data.
“Our work in providing a vital public service inspires us to help track the spread of the virus and aid in the State of California’s public health response,” said General Manager Beverli Marshall. “These studies and programs help track SARS-CoV-2 levels in wastewater so that communities can act quickly to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) developed NWSS to coordinate and build the nation’s capacity to track the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater samples collected across the country. The CDC posts the data to its COVID Data Tracker website.
About Valley Sanitary District Valley Sanitary District, founded in 1925 to collect and treat wastewater, is a special district that believes in the environmental stewardship of providing a vital public service to roughly 82,000 people within its 19.5-square-mile territory in Indio. Learn more at valley-sanitary.org.